It sounds simple, but before you implement a new marketing strategy in your business, you need to first know what your objectives are. That is, what is it that you are trying to accomplish? Social media is no different. It’s not enough to want to add it to your marketing mix because “everyone else is doing it.”
Luckily Forrester Research came up with a handy little acronym, which my colleague Amy Miyamoto and I also recently included in our Social Media Made Simple webinar series. It’s called the POST Method₁, and it’s a really easy way to frame your social media strategy. Here’s how it breaks down:
P: Who are the PEOPLE you would most like to attract via your social media presence on sites such as Twitter and Facebook? For example–mentors, colleagues, strategic alliance partners, raving fans, potential clients, local connections? Or a combination of these?
O: What are your primary OBJECTIVES for your Social Media presence? For example, is it to get found by those who are looking for your services or products, finding and interacting with current and potential clients and customers, building a community around your business, creating awareness of your content and offerings, building relationships with potential strategic alliance and referral partners, learning from mentors?
S: What Social Media STRATEGIES do you plan to implement? Will you have a Twitter profile, a Facebook Fan Page, a LinkedIn profile, join a Facebook Group, start a blog? Which ones have priority over others?
T: What TECHNOLOGIES will you use? For example–Hootsuite, Twellow, Ping.fm, Twitpic, YouTube, Bit.ly for link shortening? (The ones you determine to be of highest priority to you will influence the kinds of actions you take on the social media sites you have a presence on.)
Finally, for bonus points, you could also include “M” as in “how will you MEASURE your results?” Understandably, businesspeople still want to know the ROI of their activities—and although this is not as cut and dry to measure in social media, there are still certain numbers that you can look to: your number of newsletter or blog subscribers, number of followers and fans, your website traffic, the amount of…